Man Accused In I-85 Collapse Fire Pleads Not Guilty

Apr 18, 2017

The man accused of starting a fire that caused a section of I-85 in Atlanta to collapse has pleaded not guilty.

Local media report a judge ordered Basil Eleby released on a $10,000 signature bond, which means he only has to pay if he doesn't show up for court. The judge told Eleby on Tuesday not to go near the collapsed overpass except with his attorneys.

Eleby faces charges of arson and criminal damage to property. He's been in jail since March 31, the day after the collapse.

Police say Eleby went under the interstate to use drugs and deliberately set the fire that ignited fiber-optic cables on wooden spools.

Eleby's attorneys say he's a scapegoat and state officials should be held accountable for storing construction materials under the highway.